Sunday, March 17, 2013

Winter at Last Chance on the Henry's Fork

When I turn 50 I hope to celebrate at K2 Base Camp in Pakistan.  For some reason it’s a place calling me - a demanding hike I want to conquer.  There’s a gorgeous looking river there that no one seems to know anything about.  Granny however, who hiked to the Base Camp of Mount Everest with me years ago, thinks I should just take it easy at my favorite place on earth, Last Chance on the Henry’s Fork.

My friend and long time Henry’s Forker Johnny Scott turned 50 this weekend.  Johnny chose to celebrate on the Henry’s Fork.  He wasn’t born during prime Henry’s Fork fishing season however one of our favorite watering holes, the Trout Hunter, where we can look out the windows and watch the flow of the Fork, was wide open and ready for us.

Despite not being prime season, most sections of the Henry’s Fork are open to fishing all year.  Although Granny and I couldn’t make it up in time for fishing before birthday celebrations, many of the guys did.  The fishing was surprisingly good.  

Midge hatches were excellent around Last Chance, but the cold winter has kept the fish from rising.  Just upstream the streamer fishing in Box Canyon proved excellent.  Although a grunt to get in there through the snow, once you’re to the river the low water conditions make for easy wading and access.  For those who prefer to float, areas on the Fork around Ashton and further downstream have been hot all winter long. 

After a celebratory evening at the Trout Hunter with birthday boy Johnny and friends, Granny and I climbed in the back of the Explorer for our first car-camping night of 2013.  A sizeable storm rolled in with high winds and dropped several inches of snow.  I’m sure it was awfully cold too – but we didn’t feel it.  Wouldn’t you know, the stormy havoc outside violently shaking our truck caused me to dream that I was in a collapsing tent at the base of K2 on my 50th birthday.  Maybe Granny’s right – I should turn 50 on the Henry’s too!

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